By JUDY SHERIDAN
Parker County commissioners, who recently learned that the first phase of the Springtown Main Street drainage project will cost $400,000 less than engineers have estimated, have voted to revise the total budget from $2.2 million to $1.4 million and adjust the county’s 50 percent cost-share agreement with the City of Springtown so each entity pays $700,000 instead of $1.1 million.
Commissioners have also authorized Freese and Nichols to proceed with a final design and construction management budget of about $264,000 for the first phase.
“Working with the Corps of Engineers, we came up with a project so that we don’t have to mitigate the channel widening,” Chris Bosco, of Freese and Nichols, said, explaining the cost savings.
“We’re able to accomplish that without disturbing the natural original channel, and we also met with TxDOT to discuss what steps need to be taken for the bridge widening.”
Included in the 2008 transportation bond program as just a study, the county project — which targets flooding at the intersection of FM Road 51 and State Highway 199 as well as north of there — has evolved to encompass three phases of improvements and partnerships with the City of Springtown and TxDOT.
In the first phase, which involves moving earth and removing a park structure, the Walnut Creek channel under the FM 51 bridge will be widened to boost capacity during storms.
A trail is included, too, Bosco said, allowing pedestrians to go under the bridge so they don’t have to cross FM 51.
The second phase reconfigures and raises the FM 51/Highway 199 intersection to further increase the channel’s capacity as well as improve traffic flow.
The third phase will improve the FM 51 roadway and storm drain system from Highway 199 to just north of 5th Street.
Bosco said Freese and Nichols plans to complete the design of the first phase this summer and bid it in August, so construction can begin in the fall.
It should be finished in three or four months, he said.